Islamabad: The prime minister’s special assistant for climate change, Malik Amin Aslam, has encouraged plastic producers to help manage the threat of plastic waste in a sustainable manner to protect the environment and public health.
Addressing the high-level National Consultative Policy Dialogue on Plastic Waste Management here on Sunday, the prime minister’s aide said the government is committed to tackling the increasing environmental threat of plastic waste and has taken several policies and legal actions for that purpose under Prime Minister Imran Khan. vision for Pakistan’s Green Clean and sustainable consumption and production initiatives to achieve environmentally sustainable development.
“This sustainable plastic waste management effort is unlikely to achieve the desired results as long as various stakeholders – involved in the manufacture, sale and use of plastic materials – play their roles under their responsibility towards plastic waste management,” he said.
Organized jointly by the Ministry of Climate Change and the Pakistan Collection and Recycling Alliance, the all-day stakeholder engagement event held here on Sunday at a local hotel aims to discuss lengthy responses and frameworks to shared challenges on packaging waste and collection mechanisms, improvement performance and ultimately strengthen collective action for the sustainable collection and disposal of plastic waste in a scientific and environmentally friendly manner.
The prime minister’s aide said large-scale plastic waste, which accounts for a significant share of overall municipal waste, was generated in the country as a result of the use of various beverage companies’ products and urged companies to demonstrate a high level of responsibility for picking up plastic waste and recycling at home. under an act of extended responsibility.
He said there has been increased engagement with companies over the past few weeks, which sell products in plastic bags in the country, to ensure their plastic waste at the back end level in environmental markets is also properly collected and recycled as part of government measures to overcome the increasing amount of municipal waste and clogged waterways.
Malik Amin said several companies had pledged to introduce technological measures to manage and recycle plastic waste generated from the consumption of their products in plastic materials.
He said plastic consumption in Pakistan increased by 15 yearly growth, most of which ended up in landfills, unmanaged landfills or strewn on land and water bodies across the country.
“The country’s total annual plastic waste generation in 2020 will reach around 3.9 million tons, which is expected to increase to 6.12 million tons per year by 2050,” he said.
The PM’s Special Assistant said that around 70 percent of this plastic waste (2.6 million tonnes) was left unmanaged / mismanaged and generally allowed to be dumped in landfills, clogging waterways or destroying fertile land.
He said it is estimated that around 1.3 million tonnes of plastic can be recycled per year with existing facilities and capacities in the country.
Malik Amin said about 30 million tonnes of municipal waste are generated throughout the country.
“Although plastic waste in the municipal waste stream currently contributes 10 percent to 14 percent, the portion of plastic waste in the total city waste is increasing rapidly due to the increasing production of plastic waste in line with the country’s rapid population,” he said.
Syed Mujtaba Hussain, senior joint secretary of the climate change ministry, said working with local innovators, industry and government organizations was given attention to developing systemic solutions to promote a transition to a circular economy for plastics where they never become waste or minimize them. leak into the environment.